Thursday, November 10, 2005

Commentary on "The Last Abortion Clinic"

Some blog commentary on the PBS Documentary "The Last Abortion Clinic" from Amy Welborn's site and After Abortion. There's also this discussion area on the PBS web site.

The very first post on the PBS site is from someone using the moniker "Nikole Anon" an "Abortion Specialist" at an abortion clinic in Seattle.

My job title is "Abortion Specialist" and I support women in making this very difficult decision everyday. One thing that has proven true over and over again is the decision to terminate a pregnancy almost always comes from a place of the woman wanting to be a good mother. Either she knows she isn't in a stable place financially or emotionally and wants the opportunity to provide a good home for her child or she wants to be a better parent to the child/children she already has.

So many of the women in our society have very low self esteem that comes from inherent sexism, abuse, neglect and lack of opportunity; this prevents them from advocating for themselves - eg:saying no to unwanted sex, seeking out appropriate medical care and birth control. Pair that with the fact that no perfect method of birth control has been invented and that many are unreliable even if used as directed and it shouldn't be a mystery to anyone why women continue to get pregnant when they don't intend to. ...

I continually see patients who are caring, compassionate women who have found themselves in a position they never intended to be in but at least trust themselves enough to know that for what ever reason, they cannot take on what is the most important role a woman can attempt.

Nikole Anon
Seattle, WA

I doubt there is anyone named "Nikole Anon". My guess is that this is really Marcy Bloom from Aradia Women's Health Center. The measured arguments and moral relativism all sprinkled with a good dose of compassion toward women and mothers are trademarks of her editorials and commentary. At any rate, "Nikole" informs us right off that she is an "Abortion Specialist" so as to establish her credentials as an expert in this area. I'd like to think that someone with the title "Abortion Specialist" would actually know something about abortion.

As an "Abortion Specialist", has she read the data on women doing worse financially and emotionally after an abortion? She seems unaware of the single purpose of the abortion procedure -- to kill the unborn child. To promise any more than that is a deception that seems particularly cruel considering the circumstances under which a woman approaches an abortion clinic and the irreversibility of the procedure. Even if a woman "isn't in a stable place financially or emotionally and wants the opportunity to provide a good home for her child or she wants to be a better parent to the child/children she already has" why is abortion the best solution? This "Abortion Specialist" doesn't give us any insight in to why she believes it is.

Worst of all is her belief that being a "good mother" and abortion are compatible. I'm sure she does meet many "caring, compassionate women" in her line of work but she doesn't understand that a woman who is caring and compassionate is probably the worst candidate for an abortion. A caring and compassionate person is bound to be unhappy or have some inner turmoil when confronted with the reality that they did something uncaring and uncompassionate. The way abortion clinic workers and others usually resolve this cognitive dissonance is to begin calling abortion compassionate and caring.

Still it’s what she didn’t say that’s the most fascinating thing of all. Why this brick wall of denial among clinic workers and pro-abortion activists who don't seem to see the coercion, hesitation, fear, and tears of the women coming in for abortions? I'm not an "abortion specialist" but even I know she's painted a picture based on something other than reality. "Nikole's" experience and claims to "Abortion Specialist" status all appear to be pre-abortion but what about post-abortion? Do any of her ex-clients call her? Is she allowed to talk to them if they do call? Does that brick wall go up every time she hears from a client who regrets her abortion? Does she ever hear the words, "You told me everything would be ok but it isn't"?

Clearly "Nikole" doesn't seem to realize that she sells abortion; nothing more, nothing less. She is simply flattering herself with the word "specialist". She sells women and the public the false logic that since good women will abort their children that therefore abortion is also good. It reminds me of something that was said to a post abortive woman who walked into her first church related experience after many years. The man leading the introduction to this particular denomination opened with the words, "Sometimes abortion is the most loving thing we can do."

1 comment:

Christina Dunigan said...

I think "desire to be a good mother" is code for "fear of failure." Not to be flippant about it -- parenting is a terrifying prospect and failing at it is hideously painful. But how does it prepare a woman for the rigors of motherhood to pat her on the head and reinforce her idea that she's only capable of being a good mother under ideal circumstances?